Dry carpet cleaning involves the use of specialized machines to clean carpets with recently developed chemical technologies that permit no-moisture or “very low moisture” (VLM) cleaning, resulting in carpet beautification, and removal of stains, dirt, grit, sand, and allergens. Clean carpets are recognized by manufacturers as being more visually pleasing, potentially longer-lasting and probably healthier than poorly maintained carpets. Carpet cleaning is reportedly widely misunderstood, and chemical developers have only within recent decades created new carpet care technologies.
Dry carpet cleaning systems are more accurately known as “very low moisture” (VLM) systems, relying on dry compounds complemented by application cleaning solutions, and are growing significantly in market share due in part to their very rapid drying time, a significant factor for 24-hour commercial installations. Dry-cleaning and “very low moisture” systems are also often faster and less labor-intensive than wet-extraction systems.
Pre-treatments, pre-conditioners, or “traffic-lane cleaners”, which are detergents or emulsifiers that break the binding of soils to carpet fibers over a short period of time, are commonly sprayed onto carpet prior to the primary use of the dry-cleaning system. One chemical dissolves the greasy films that bind soils and prevent effective soil removal by vacuuming.
An absorbent, biodegradable powder and cleaning compound may be spread evenly over carpet and brushed or scrubbed in. For small areas, a household hand brush can work such a compound into carpet pile; dirt and grime is attracted to the compound, which is then vacuumed off, leaving carpet immediately clean and dry. For commercial applications, a specially designed cylindrical counter-rotating brushing system is used, without a vacuum cleaner. Machine scrubbing is more typical, in that hand scrubbing generally cleans only the top third of carpet.